FIRST Robotics FRC Event 2015


More information or robotics in the Rio Grande Valley visit   FIRST-RGV, Inc.

The City of Pharr Innovation & Technology department and the Pharr Economic Development Corporation hosted the 2015 FIRST – First Robotics Competition (FRC) kick off event at the Pharr Events Center in Pharr, Texas on January 3, 2015.

More than 200 students from all over the Rio Grande Valley (RGV) joined city and state leaders at the CS-AFTER-PHARR263Pharr Event Center for the event that started at 8am CST and lasted till almost 1:30pm CST.

We had a great turn out said Jason Arms, Pharrs Innovation & Technology director. Its great seeing all these students enjoying themselves learning about science and technology he added. Staff from the Pharr Innovation & Technology department were on hand to coordinate the event and to support the live broadcast reception.

NASA-TV and member of US FIRST were on the world-wide broadcast that reached more than 70,000 high-school students eager to start this years competition. State Represenative Sergio Munoz Jr and Pharr Commissioner Adan Farias was on hand to welcome the kids to the Pharr Events Center and to remind them to remain focused on their grades and to continue on to achieve higher  education.

CS-AFTER-PHARR255Volunteer and commercial entities attended this years kick-off to learn more about the FIRST program being offered. Interfacing with the public and our industrial leaders is key in building the science and technology community said Kevin Graham, FIRST Executive Committee member for the Rio Grande Valley.  I think you will see a big growth in this program around the valley over the next year and we are glad that Pharr is helping, Graham added.

Juan Carlos Suarez of FIRST in Texas stated, “The Valley is past-ready for this type of event to be held down here. For the past several years we have had valley teams travel to San Antonio and Austin just to qualify for the later competitions. Yet this has been a barrier for many other potential teams. Now, with the help of the City of Pharr and the City of Harlingen, we will be hosting qualifier events in the Valley. Suarez continued by saying, This type of program is what will allow the Valley to continue to be relevant in the new knowledge-economy. Our objective is for Valley students to have the same, or better, opportunities than any other student across the country

The event was visited by the Law Enforcement Regional Response Team (LEERT); which consists of members of the law enforcement community from various police departments around the Rio Grande Valley. The LERRT utilizes several robotic devices for hostage and other high risk sort of calls. Their robots were displayed to the attendees and were allowed to ask questions as to the technology and use of the robots for the team.

Veronica Baca from the Harlingen Independent School District (ISD) was on hand to demonstrate the First Lego League (FLL) competition board and some of the equipment and robots used in that program. Harlingen ISD has a strong robotic program and looks forward to an upcoming FLL qualifier in February 24, 2015 for which middle school students from around the valley will get together and show off their robots to judges and earn points towards the final competition. (More information on this event, visit